Study data suggests 95% cure rate for men with prostate cancer using high intensity focused ultrasound


The Diagnostic Center for Disease, Florida, USA, in conjunction with PanAm HIFU, announced data results on 5 March 2013 showing a 95% cure rate with high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) in more than 200 patients at more than 7 years post treatment.

The patients had biopsy-proven prostate cancer in conjunction with a 3 tesla magnetic resonance imaging spectroscopy (MRI-S). Ronald E Wheeler, medical director at the Diagnostic Center for Disease, attributed the results to excellence in imaging, excellence in application of technology as well as excellence in patient selection.

According to the results, MRI-S continues to be evaluated in a head-to-head comparison to random prostate biopsies, but it appeared the MRI-S scan is the missing tool for diagnosing prostate cancer which allowed for a dramatic improvement in treatment results.

Approximately 700,000 American men receive a negative prostate biopsy result; however approximately 25% of these results are false-negative. Under the current standard of care, prostate biopsy procedures collect 10–12 needle biopsy cores on average, which samples less than 1% of a man’s prostate. This approach leaves men at risk for a hidden cancer, leading to a high rate of repeat biopsies, often on cancer-free men, which hinders or delays the application of a procedure with this high rate of cure.

The MRI-S scan allows for enhancement of various diagnostic discrimination factors including: evidence of extracapsular extension, dominance of cancer in a side-to-side assessment, true density of tissue based on a diffusion weighted image sequence, dynamic contrast enhancement, and spectroscopy (if assessable). Once the patient assessment had taken place, a qualified HIFU treating expert can expect to experience predictably better results than those achieved without the MRI-S scan. Wheeler noted that current worldwide data with HIFU (regardless of technology utilised) supports a cure rate of approximately 78% to 80%. The data is from a seminal study that, according to the Diagnostic Center for Disease, enables prostate cancer patients the opportunity to improve their choice of one therapy vs. an alternative treatment.